My mother is of Mexican decent

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John Matlock Long Beach, CA This is the answer when I’m asked what my background is. I used to just say “Mexican” but the question and subsequent answer has become increasingly complicated in today’s multicultural landscape.

I’m biracial but others see black.

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Willie McBride Long Beach, CA I was born in Taiwan to a Chinese mother and African American father. I was orphaned an American serviceman and his wife adopted me; my adopted father just happens to be African American and my mother is Chinese. They also never mentioned that I was adopted and so I grew [...]

Sometimes I forget I’m not white

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Darshi Balasuriya Long Beach, CA I spend my days mostly in Orange County California. I live in this white world and often see myself in the reflection of those whom I love and enjoy the company of. I rarely think about color of skin or race. But occasionally I encounter treatment from others that doesn’t [...]

Mexican-American, But No Hablo Espanol

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Vincent Yanez Long Beach, CA For as long as I remember my mother, and myself as I got older, was given a very hard time from people in our neighborhood and some family members about my little sister, little brother, and I not being able to speak Spanish. My mother and father both grew up [...]

YOU’RE NOT REALLY ONE OF US!

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L P SIMMONS LONG BEACH, CA IT’S SO HARD BEING AN AFRICAN AMERICAN MALE THAT TOOK ADVANTAGE OF THE GAINS OF THE CIVIL RIGHTS MOVEMENT. I HAD THE CHANCE TO GO TO COLLEGE FREE AND EXPERIENCE A LOT IN LIFE. BECAUSE THESE ADVENTURES ARE NOT COMMON TO THE AFRICAN AMERICAN COMMUNITY, THE EXPERIENCES AND MYSELF [...]

Travon could have been my student.

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Ron Smith Long Beach, CA I size up my class every year, and I have my own prejudices. My students size me up every year, and they have theirs. Through our discussions we get to know each other on a deeper level, and 95% of the time, we end the class with positive memories of [...]